Welcome in Goa
Goa is one of the most visited places in India as there are so many places to visit in Goa. Goa is known for the spectacular beaches it has. In fact, the beaches of Goa are so good that they are renowned all over the world. People from every corner of the world come to visit Goa and it is also considered to house some of the best beaches in the whole world. Goa is not just about beaches, it is a lot more than that.
There are numerous tourist attractions in Goa and one can visit any of them. The state is not a very diverse place and the majority of the people here follow Christianity. Therefore, there are hundreds of churches present in Goa. The churches in Goa is the ideal place to go if one wants some peace of mind and connect to their spiritual self. There are many water activities also which are done here. Jet skiing, kite surfing, parasailing, and waterboarding are some of the water sports which one can do here.
Any Goa trip would be considered to be incomplete if one does not enjoy the outstanding nightlife in Goa. One will be sure to have a gala time as they will get to meet people of different cultures and countries here. Goa is the ideal place to visit if one wants to just relax and enjoy the beautiful beaches, have an amazing time partying or want to carry out any of the multiple water activities present here.
Popular Places to Visit in Goa
01 Baga Beach
Baga Beach is the most famous of all Goan beaches and as a tourist visiting Goa you really haven’t been to Goa if you haven’t been to Baga. Full to the brim with activities you can indulge in, Baga Beach and its surrounding areas will not give you time to get bored. There is always something exciting going on here. In the morning, the beach is a great place to lounge in, soak in the sun and interact with tourists from all over the world.
When you’re done with the sun, it is time to take in the salty sea winds with some adventurous water sports in Goa. Head over to lunch at one of the many restaurants that populate the beach and which offer various dining options. If it is fine dining you want, you can take your pick from some of the top restaurants of Goa. But even if you’re just in the mood for casual food, you can find some pretty good places near the beach which will delight your appetite.
Night is the time when the beach virtually comes alive. Lots of great party options make Baga Beach an amazing beach to party the night away. Tito’s, Cafe Mambo, Kandy Club and many more clubs make Baga beach a party haven every night.
Water Sports: Baga Beach is best-known for its jet skiing, parasailing, banana ride and boating water-sports.
02 Calangute Beach
The largest beach in Goa, Calangute Beach is also affectionately known as the “Queen of Beaches”. It is among the top ten beaches in the world, which means it is one of the tourist places in Goa that you should not miss. It is a big, serene beach with activities enough to fill your mind for the entirety of your trip. The beach alone is a great attraction for tourists. The beach is ideal for both the options, lying down in the sand without the fear of being run over or trying your hand at some water sports.
There are a lot of options to choose from. The distance of Calangute from Baga Beach is not great; the two beaches are only separated from each other by some rocks. You can choose to have breakfast or lunch at Baga or Calangute. There are also many great sight-seeing opportunities near Calangute such as Morjim Beach, St. Alex Church, the Water Pond of Arambol, Ashvem Beach, the Aguada Lighthouse & Aguada Fort, Nerul River, the Friday Local Mapusa Market, River Betul & Betul Estuary.
And at night, you will find Calangute transformed into a party hub as good as the one at Baga Beach. Since Calangute Beach is connected to most other important tourist spots in North Goa, it is a good place to reside in during your Goa visit.
Water Sports: Calangute offers the best in water sports- enjoy kayaking, sailing, wind-surfing, water snorkeling, water-skiing, and fishing here. Parasailing is also a sport you can indulge in.
03 Grand Island
There is no dearth of water related activities in Goa, of course. But while the different beaches up and down Goa offer tourists many options, these options are not to be found all in one place. Not so in grand island. Grand Island is the nirvana of Goan water-sports. There is a lot to be experienced here from diving to snorkelling to fishing. Scuba diving is the most popular activity in Goa because it offers so much in terms of underwater exploration.
There are ship wrecks to be found here as well as some reefs. The “Suzy” wreck and the “Davy Jones Locker” are especially popular with divers as are Serge City, Bounty Rock, and Turbo Tunnel. Experienced and beginner divers both find something to satisfy in Grand Island. You can also go snorkelling. Professional instructors will provide the equipment and the instructions. Bumper boats and banana boats are also popular around the island.
End the day with a fishing trip and a barbeque of the produce you caught. A day trip usually lasts from 8.30am to 4 pm but it can be negotiated beforehand. If you want an in-depth underwater experience, Grand Island is one of the places to visit in Goa. You will come back from your trip exhausted but well-satisfied with your day. Make sure to carry all your swimming and beach essentials as well as spare clothes for the day.
04 Dudhsagar Waterfalls
The Dudhsagar Waterfalls are situated on the Goa-Karnataka border and are one of India’s must-see sights. The four-tiered waterfall structure is one of the tallest in India and is located on the Mandovi River. The white water cascades down from a height of nearly 1017 feet off a nearly steep mountain face. They form a part of the Bhagwan Mahaveer Sanctuary and Mollem National Park, so the best way to reach them is by entering the national park and taking a van allocated by the park to the falls.
The Dudhsagar trek inside the park is closed to the public but you can still reach the waterfalls by trekking from Kulem and following the jeep trail. Another possible route is the trek from Castle Rock in Karnataka. Reaching the waterfalls will not be an easy task but it is one that is worth every ounce of effort put into it. They are best experienced during the monsoons as they lose their force during the dry season.
Many tours are organized over this time so you can choose to go as a part of a group. Some tours even have overnight camping options. But remember to go well-prepared to ensure a good experience, especially if you are going on a self-organized trek. The lush green jungle and the beautiful waterfall sending up their forceful sprays are a sight to remember long after you have left Dudhsagar behind.
05 Tito’s Street
06 Fort Aguada
Another heritage from the Portuguese, Fort Aguada has been standing stern on the beach facing the Arabian Sea from 1612 when it was built in order to provide defence against the invading Dutch and the Marathas. It was a grand old fort in its time with the capacity to hold 79 cannons among other weapons of defense. It was one of the prized possessions of the Portuguese. Today, it stands as a famous landmark dividing the Sinquerium Beach and the Candolim Beach.
There is an old lighthouse standing within the fort which was built in 1864, the oldest lighthouse of its shape and size in India. Fort Aguada is a great place to explore when you are out visiting the Candolim or Sinquerium Beaches. The architecture gives a good insight into the building techniques of old Portuguese architects and it has some amazing views you should really see. The old fort provides a good view of the sea and the sunset is reckoned to be lovely.
The fort is a great way to spend an afternoon. Afternoons are usually too hot to spend on the beach. But you don’t want to be cooped up in your hotel room when in Goa. So, head over to Fort Aguada and spend your time exploring it. Once you’re done, you can simply sit down and enjoy the sea breezes as you let the afternoon pass by. And then you can head over to either of the two beaches that strike your fancy in the evening. It makes the perfect resting point during your tour of the beaches in North Goa
07 Palolem Beach
Palolem is one of Goa’s most beautiful beaches, or at least used to be till it got overrun by commercialization in the form of huts and hawkers. Nonetheless, its peaceful waters bordered by headlands are still very attractive. It is a popular tourist attraction of South Goa. The location makes its sea calmer than others and you can walk almost 100m into the sea with ease. Not only are there many things to do on the Palolem Beach, there are many things you do in the nearby locality.
You can participate in an early morning yoga class for one thing. You can also dance at the offbeat Silent Noise Disco. You put on headphones provided by the club and party into the early hours of the morning without any worry about the police interrupting you because of the noise. There are also many sightseeing options like the Monkey Island and the Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary. Both places make a good day trip around Palolem.
If you wish to simply kick back and relax, Palolem is a good place wherein to do so. Also get an Ayurveda massage while you are at it.
Water Sports: Scuba diving, canyoning, self-paddle kayaking, dolphin watching are some activities you can undertake here